Happy birthday to former footballer now rugby regular Mari Walker

Mari (second left) with a fired-up Divas squad

Happy birthday to Mari Walker – a sporting woman who specialises in rugby union.

Born on April 13, 1988, Mari works for our wonderful NHS, is married to Matt and has two lovely children, Joshua and Emily.

Although now a rugby player, Mari also has plenty of football in her background.

She played for Llysfaen, Llandudno (once in the Welsh Cup) and Kinmel Bay, who she admits will always be the team closest to her heart.

Rugby-wise, Mari is a flanker for Chester Divas, a flourishing team which won the Women’s NC 2 North West League in 2019-20 and are set for promotion, although they were unable to take it up this season due to the entire campaign being cancelled by coronavirus.

She loves a scrum and a tackle, but admits to often finding herself running around with the backs. Mari has also represented North Wales flagship side RGC.

With her lively, bubbly, unique and dynamic personality, Mari is the perfect team-mate and many others will say that.

Mari is never short of a smile

Her sporting spirit was typified when she turned out for Llandudno’s scratch football side in their heavy Welsh Cup defeat to Abergavenny last season.

Having not played for several months after resigning from the Welsh Premier Women’s League, Tudno were still determined to fulfill their commitment to play a cup quarter-final against Aber.

Manager Sarah Colville had only seven rusty regulars and other occasional players at her disposal to face a very strong visiting team which had been in regular action.

Yet Llandudno gave their all, with Mari working her socks off from first whistle to last.

The Llandudno team that day was: Jessica Hughes, Jordanne Greenough, Claire Colville, Cat Jones, Mari Walker, Kelsey Hughes, Kelsey Davies, Stacey Tradewell, Ella-mae Hughes, Sofie Owen, Fflur Williams. Subs: Nikki Pritchard, Charlotte Ryan.

Mari surely cannot wait to return to the field again with her beloved rugby Divas.

In the meantime, here’s hoping she has a fantastic birthday with family and friends – penblwydd hapus Mari x

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